Side hustle revolution: Aussie entrepreneurs are thriving and transforming the economy

- March 1, 2024 2 MIN READ


In February 2024, GoDaddy expanded its Venture Forward research program to Australia, which analysed over 315,000 Australian online micro businesses. The Venture Forward data reveals unique insights into the booming side hustle trend changing the Australian economy, writes Suzanne Mitchell, Australia Market Lead at GoDaddy.

Australia is in the midst of a side hustle revolution.

One in four Australian entrepreneurs surveyed feel optimistic about the national economy in the next six months. However, 71 per cent are positive about their business prospects. The study found that 61 per cent of Australian entrepreneurs are successfully managing side hustles while working full-time. They use online tools to overcome barriers to entry.

The financial returns from these side hustlers can be remarkable. More than 25 per cent of business owners surveyed began their companies with [around] $500. They put in less than 10 hours of work per week. More than half make extra money each month, with 19 per cent earning over $2,500 monthly.

Having a growth mindset

The Australian entrepreneurs we spoke to want to grow their side hustles into full-time ventures. 83 per cent of Australians surveyed have this goal. Emma McLeavy owns Jo and Co Hampers and Floral Design. She started her online business with GoDaddy’s online tools and now makes a generous profit.

Emma decided she wanted to do work that gave her flexibility and inspired her. After experiencing a family tragedy, Emma decided she wanted to do work that was more meaningful, exciting and allowed her to spend more time with her family.

She says: “I started my side hustle because I wanted to build something I loved and had control over. I started this as a small project during my maternity leave, but I’ve been amazed by its success and how much I’ve loved doing it. I’m eager to keep growing it in the future.”

Delving deeper into GoDaddy’s data, those who have started full-time businesses have the potential to grow their [revenue]. More than half reported making over $5,000 each month. Meanwhile, 22 per cent reported earning more than $25,000 a month or $300,000 a year.

Yet, their journeys to success is not without its challenges.

Long hours lead to side hustle success

Having a successful side hustle is often the result of blood, sweat and tears. Almost a quarter of Australian entrepreneurs surveyed work over 40 hours a week and just less than half say they feel very stressed. However, most say life improves after starting a business.

Micro businesses, a driving force in the Australian economy, appear to have flourished post-pandemic. More than half of the businesses surveyed started after 2020. 39 per cent of them employ at least one other person. The number of these businesses planning to hire is also set to increase, with 40 per cent planning to hire in the next year.

GoDaddy’s Venture Forward data is unique, capturing and analysing micro business dynamics. Microbusinesses have a big impact on the Australian economy. They have the ability to contribute billions into the economy, create jobs, increase wages, and help the GDP grow in local communities. GoDaddy is dedicated to supporting and empowering everyday entrepreneurs by providing easy-to-use and affordable online tools to help empower them to succeed in online business.

Australia has a strong entrepreneurial spirit. The side hustle culture is just one example of how microbusinesses are growing and changing the Australian economy.

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